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How to Make a Small Space Look Bigger

9th January 2017

There are lots of clever interior design tricks to answering: how to make a small space look bigger. Wallpaper and fabric are some of the best ways to create the illusion of extra room. Here's how to make your home seem larger, even if the physical measurements stay the same...

Room Colour Ideas

For very cramped spaces, keep to a neutral palette and introduce colour gradually. If you want to bring in bold furnishings or darker shades, consider placing them towards the far end of the room. This draws the eye outwards and gives the impression that the room extends further.

Top tip: Paint cornices, skirting boards, door frames, and windowsills in the same shade as the walls. This gives the impression of maximum wall space and makes for a cleaner, open feel.

How to Make a Small Space Look Bigger

Let There Be Light

Darker spaces feel smaller, it’s as simple as that. Introduce light into your home by selecting a lighter shade of paint or wallpaper. Likewise, opt for thinner, lightweight fabric for curtains and blinds

Top tip: Minimise clutter on windowsills and use metallic accents to reflect what light you do have.

Curtains and Blinds

Long curtains can add much needed height to any room, especially when in a neutral shade. If you feel curtains may be too domineering, choose simple blinds for a crisp look. 

Top tip: A clever trick to add further height is to raise your curtain pole a few inches to a foot above the top of your window. Don't forget to factor this adjustment in when calculating your fabric measurements. 

Create Flow...

The key to making a small room feel larger is maximising the “flow”. This means that nothing should drastically disrupt your attention as your eye moves through the room.

Things that can be distracting include dark or dramatic colours, ill-fitting accessories, or furniture with a bulky or overpowering shape. Take a moment to stand in the entrance of your chosen room and slowly cast your eye around. Be on the lookout for anything that doesn’t fit or would be better placed elsewhere.

Use Stripes to Their Full Potential & Manage Scale

Striped wallpaper and fabric is invaluable when trying to make a space feel larger. Vertical stripes on wallpaper or curtains will add height to your room. Meanwhile, horizontal stripes can make drapery look longer, particularly when used in narrow spaces. 

Top tip: Stripes don’t necessarily need to be confined to your walls. A bold striped rug or even a painted ceiling can maximise the space you have and add an interesting feature.

Patterned wallpaper or fabric can give a warmer feel to a room, but large motifs can often overpower a tiny space. Opt for smaller scale designs or mix small and large to create balance.

Choosing the Right Furniture

When choosing furniture, opt for more “leggy” designs over those which extend to the floor. This will make more floor space visible, and therefore ensure the room feels less cramped. 

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